By Joe Koizumi
It was a final show at the Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, this year, featuring five ex-world challengers’ appearance. Astoundingly ex-WBC 122-pound challenger who lost to Oscar Larios in 2002, Manabu Fukushima (35-10-4, 19 KOs), 126, was badly knocked out by a single devastating left hook of JBC#8 feather Noriyuki Ueno (11-9-4, 4 KOs), 125.75, at 1:52 of the opening session in a scheduled eight. Fukushima, former national and OPBF ruler, made a good start, but took the haymaker and hit the deck with a thud to be unable to beat the count.
Former two-time world challenger, 34-year-old southpaw veteran Hidenobu Honda (32-7, 14 KOs), 118, floored also ex-WBA 115-pound challenger Konosuke Tomiyama (19-3, 6 KOs), 117.75, with a Pacquiao right hook in the second, winning an upset decision (59-55 twice and 58-56) over six. Honda displayed Pernell Whitaker tactics and kept countering the much younger willing mixer with precision.
The main event was the very last at the Hall this year, but it must be the dullest and dirtiest fight of the year. Ex-national flyweight ruler Kenji Yoshida (16-9, 5 KOs), 114.75, and ex-WBC 115-pound challenger losing to Cristian Mijares, Teppei Kikui (23-8, 4 KOs), 115, repeated clinching, holding, headbutting and hitting with open blows with the former awarded a close but unanimous nod (77-76, 77-75 and 78-75) over eight. It was an intolerable burden to endure watching such a lousy bout until the end.
Promoter: Watanabe Promotions.